Palatine Private Equity Acquires IT specialist Acora supported by £18.5m Funding from Shawbrook Bank

£18.5m finance agreement includes an acquisition facility to support Acora’s buy-and-build growth strategy.

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Shawbrook Bank, the specialist lender to UK SMEs, has provided a funding package of £18.5m to help Palatine Private Equity acquire a significant minority in IT specialist Acora.

As part of the agreement, Shawbrook is providing an acquisition facility to immediately support Acora’s ambitious buy-and-build strategy, with the option to enlarge the facility if required.

The backing from Palatine will allow the business to accelerate its focus on acquisitive growth, as it eyes opportunities that will offer both scale and new capabilities.

James Salmon, Director at Shawbrook Bank, said:

“We are pleased to support the continued success and growth of Acora by funding this strategic investment by Palatine Private Equity.

“Shawbrook is committed to helping SMEs across the UK achieve their goals as quickly as possible with finance arrangements that suit them and their business. This particular funding facility is testament to the speed and simplicity of the financing that we can provide – particularly in this example of supporting an ambitious sponsor-back SME in the form of Acora.

“Bank funding was completed within three weeks of the equity financing conclusion, notwithstanding the unfortunate onset of Covid-19 and the nationwide lockdown measures. With all stakeholders working remotely, being able to conclude this deal so quickly and efficiently provided all invested partners with particular satisfaction.”

Palatine are experienced mid-market investors and operators who have a track-record in investing in both the IT sector and with buy-and-build platforms.

Acora offers a full-service suite, from service desk through to cloud transformation and ongoing managed service of cloud applications and infrastructure. In recent years, its management have invested in both organic growth and acquisitions, successfully upscaling the business through two major acquisitions in the last three years.

Shawbrook’s Unitranche product – launched in 2019 – enabled Palatine’s acquisition of Acora, whilst also providing follow on capital to deliver Acora’s growth strategy. The IT specialist has an established buy-and-build strategy with the intention to scale through the acquisition of books of business as well as adding capability, specifically targeting businesses with cloud specialisms.

Shawbrook Bank’s legal advisor was Dechert LLP.